BD to acquire Irish biotech GenCell Biosystems

The acquisition provides BD with a foothold in next-generation sequencing in light of GenCell's proprietary library preparation technologies

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FRANKLIN LAKES, N.J.—Becton, Dickinson and Co. (BD) has announced the acquisition of privately held GenCell Biosystems, an Irish biotech company that develops proprietary technologies for key biological analysis protocols related to library preparation for next-generation sequencing (NGS). The company's headquarters and manufacturing are based in Limerick, Ireland, and it has a U.S. marketing, sales and service group located in Madison, Wis.
 
“We are looking forward to joining with BD to provide great solutions for our current and future customers in next-generation sequencing,” Kieran Curran, CEO and founder of GenCell, commented in a statement. “In a short amount of time, we have been able to move CLC technology from concept to product. We believe we will now be able to scale up and introduce further transformative innovation in NGS-related segments.”
 
No financial details for the deal have been released. BD will update its guidance to reflect the expected impact of this acquisition during its Q4 earnings conference call, which is scheduled for Nov. 4 at 8 a.m. EST.
 
“We are excited with the GenCell Biosystems acquisition as it provides BD entry into the next-generation sequencing market, a fast-growing segment with the potential to have a significant impact on healthcare,” Linda Tharby, group president at BD, said in a press release. “The acquisition gives BD access to the NGS market with a differentiated platform that will provide a base to further grow our genomics offerings.”
 
This announcement comes a little over a week after BD posted news of another acquisition, one with a billion-dollar price tag attached. On Oct. 5, BD and medical technology company CareFusion, which is based in San Diego, announced a definitive agreement under which BD will acquire CareFusion for $58 per share in cash, for a total deal value of $12.2 billion. Both companies' boards of directors have unanimously approved the transaction. Following the closing of the deal, which is expected to be completed in the first half of next year, CareFusion will operate as part of BD's Medical segment.
 
Per the terms of the agreement, CareFusion stockholders will receive $49 in cash and 0.0777 of a share of BD stock for each share of CareFusion stock they hold, for a total of $58 per share based on the Oct. 3 closing price of BD's stock. The deal is subject to regulatory approvals, approval by CareFusion's shareholders and customary closing conditions. Once the transaction is complete, BD shareholders will own roughly 92 percent of the combined company, with CareFusion shareholders owning roughly 8 percent.
 
BD expects to see double-digit cash EPS accretion in the first full year following the close of the transaction, which is also expected to be accretive to GAAP EPS in fiscal year 2018. BD has identified $250 million in pre-tax cost synergies from this deal, which are expected to be fully realized in fiscal year 2018. The company has also reaffirmed its existing financial guidance for the 2014 fiscal year.
 
"BD’s acquisition of CareFusion allows us to align our highly complementary technologies and products to address unmet needs in the growing $20-billion global medication management industry, which leverages BD’s world-wide infrastructure. It accelerates BD’s transition from a product-focused company to a customer-centric provider of innovative healthcare solutions with leading scale across the medication management value chain and expanded solutions for patient safety,” noted Vincent A. Forlenza, BD’s chairman, CEO and president. “With the targeted cost savings we have identified and the growth opportunities we see in bringing CareFusion products to more patients and healthcare workers around the world, we expect this transaction to create meaningful value for our shareholders, customers, employees and other stakeholders. We’ve long admired CareFusion’s strong franchises and look forward to welcoming their talented team to BD."


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